Hun­dreds rally for re­lease of Is­raeli man held cap­tive by Ha­mas for 3 years

The Jewish Voice - - NEWS IN REVIEW -

( Hun­dreds of Is­raelis took to the streets of Tel Aviv Sun­day night in sol­i­dar­ity with the fam­ily of Is­raeli ci­ti­zen Avera Mengistu, who has been held cap­tive by the Pales­tinian ter­ror group Ha­mas for three years in the Gaza Strip.

At the rally, demon­stra­tors stated that the Is­raeli gov­ern­ment should be mak­ing a greater ef­fort to se­cure Mengistu’s re­lease from Ha­mas-ruled Gaza. The Pales­tinian ter­ror group is be­lieved to have held Mengistu, who is of Jewish-Ethiopian ori­gin, ever since he vol­un­tar­ily crossed into the coastal ter­ri­tory in Septem­ber 2014.

Mengistu’s rel­a­tives have said he suf­fers from men­tal health is­sues.

“Avera, our dear brother. Three years ago, when we heard the news of your dis­ap­pear­ance, a great dark­ness fell over our home,” said Mengistu’s broth­ers, Ilan and Yossi, who read a let­ter at the rally on be­half of the captured Is­raeli man’s five sib­lings.

“For three years now our mother and fa­ther can­not can’t even imag­ine how much your ab­sence is felt,” they said.

Ha­mas has not of­fi­cially con­firmed Mengistu’s de­ten­tion, but has pub­lished con­tent on so­cial me­dia us­ing his im­age sev­eral times.

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